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MEMORIAL DAY 2007


Roy and Cindy Kellum place flowers at the gravesite of Medal of Honor receipient Mike Clausen on the behalf of Northshore Chapter 741.

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USAF Sr Airman Elizabeth A Loncki, 23, died January 7, 2007 in the Baghdad area near Al-Mahmudiyah from an vehicle borne improvised explosive device which they were investigating at the time it exploded while attempting to disarm it. She and two airmen also killed were assigned to the 775th Civil Engineer Squadron, Hill Air Force Base, UT. The three airmen were members of an explosive ordnance disposal team.  Elizabeth attended the University of Arizona before enlisting. She enjoyed rock music, swimming, volleyball and being able to match boys push-up for push-up. She deployed to Iraq in August and was due to return home in two weeks. She is survived by her father Stephen Loncki; stepmother Christine Loncki; sister Olivia Loncki; mother Ann Roberts; stepfather Joey Roberts; several aunts, uncles, grandparents; fiancée SGT Jayson Johnson who was planning to ask her father's permission to marry her; and many other family members and friends.

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Past Chapter Commanders Gary Phillips and Roy Kellum present a check to Mr. Joey Roberts, stepfather of Sr. Airman Elizabeth Loncki.  The check was donated by Northshore Chapter 741 and will be used for postage to ship 100 care packages to the troops in Iraq in memory of Elizabeth.  Elizabeth’s mother Ann and stepfather Joey live in Franklinton, LA.

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Cpl William Joshua Rechenmacher

1/7/1983 - 1/18/2007

 

Bronze Star

Purple Heart

 

1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion

1st Cavalry Division

Fort Hood, Texas



Josh died doing what he loved to do - being a soldier. He was in
Iraq on his second tour –one he volunteered for. While patrolling the streets of Baghdad, his Humvee hit an IED.
Josh was from
Jacksonville, Florida. He attended Forest High School, participated in JROTC and joined the Army at age 17. His family says he wanted to serve his country since he was a toddler. And, serve he did, for seven years and two deployments to Iraq
. And, he loved being a Soldier.
"When he was little, he loved Top Gun. We went through three Top Gun tapes because he would constantly play it over and over. He would sit there and get his dad's motorcycle helmet and a plunger and pretend he was flying the plane," his mother said.
His father says his son “knew the risks. He didn't have to be in this unit. He wanted to be in this unit. He prided himself very much and we're proud of him."
They know that he died doing what he loved, fighting for a cause he believed in and because of that, they feel exactly as he did. "He told us 95% of the people appreciate us being there and he couldn't wait to go back to help them. Do we need to be there? My son died because of that. Yes we do."
Josh was accompanied home by his best friend and fellow soldier. A memorial service was held in
Jacksonville. His burial took place in Arlington Cemetery
.

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Chaplain George Jones presents a Gold Star Flag to 8 year old
Kathrinne Rechenmacher (sister of Josh) while the family looks on
(Step-mother LeAnne, Father Rhett and Uncle David)

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